5 Negative Employee Habits That Slow Down The Payroll Process

Posted by Cedric Joshua Martinez

Sep 22, 2016 9:00:00 AM

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When your payroll process is slowing down or you’re constantly missing deadlines, sometimes the fault isn’t on you, your accountants, or your payroll software. It may actually be on your employees themselves. Much like the motor of an engine, even the smallest loose screw can lead to your vehicle running at inadequate efficiency.

There are certain habits and behaviours that you need to keep an eye out for to keep your payroll management as smooth as possible. These can be eliminated as early as the employee hiring process, but doesn’t have to resort to the termination of anyone’s working contract. Simply correcting the behaviour and showcasing the proper methods should be enough to remedy the situation.

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1. Not being mindful of deadlines

This is the most frequent offense to your payroll process punctuality. Whether it be their tax documents for new employees, asking for their pay early, or submitting their timesheets late, any fluctuation in their deadlines will ultimately affect the whole system. While you cannot force an employee to be more timely, you can punish tardiness or incentivise quick responses. Many organisations suggest that encouragement is a much more effective means of correcting bad behaviour. However, the choice remains up to you as there many things to consider before launching such a project.

2. Dishonest/Absence of full disclosure

An employee being mistakenly overpaid has happened many times and will continue to happen as no process is without flaws. However, if the employee refuses to mention it to payroll management, it will lead to delays, inconsistencies in bookkeeping, and many more road bumps on your way to payroll completion. In other cases, they would not (or would forget to) mention any changes in information crucial to the payroll process, such as present address or a change in bank accounts. Encourage your employees to be more open about information related to their payroll with management to keep the payroll process on track.

3. Carelessly accomplished forms

Imagine this: you have stacks of paperwork to go through, full of employer forms for employees with large amounts of information that you have to encode. You think it’s all going smoothly, until you come across a paper crumpled almost beyond readable condition, with coffee stains, illegible handwriting, or any other manifestation of sloppy work or carelessness. At this point, you’ll realize that this single piece of paper held up the entire process, simply by being too haphazardly accomplished to ignore. Much more than that, you’ll end up having to contact this employee for the correct details, which may even take more time considering the sloppiness of their work.

4. Mistakes

While completely understandable (after all, no one is free of error), this is part of the list so you, as their employer, can keep an eye out for potential mistakes they may make and correct them. They may file the wrong tax forms, or submit their documents to the wrong person. Mistakes may be normal, but that doesn’t mean they have to happen. Create precautions to minimise the chances that your employees will commit errors. You could include a training program in your employee hiring process to educate them about the many processes and systems in place at your business. Further materials may be needed, so why not create a website for them to easily access if they’re unsure or have forgotten the proper actions they should take?

5. A negative attitude

Negativity spreads like a contagious disease, taking advantage of every possible method of infecting others. You may be asking how easily it can spread — the answer is that it can be as easy as brushing against you as you walk by and using rude language as he scowls back at you for violating his personal space. This simple act can leave you hotheaded and quick to anger, even if you don’t realise it yourself. Negativity causes a lack of trust in your payroll management and disrupts communication, a vital part of any successful bookkeeping process. Therefore, you need to stop negativity from spreading before it affects your processes. Try to diffuse any tension and establish a calmer atmosphere when speaking to your employees.


Keep an eye out for these 5 employee habits, and you’ll ensure that your payroll management will be a cakewalk. If you have any other questions about payroll or have realised that your problem lies beyond employee behaviour, then don’t hesitate to contact us so we can find your problems and offer a solution that persists.

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Topics: Payroll Services

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